Wednesday, July 27, 2016

The Sommeliers Selection Awards at The Stack, Leinster Hall

This is the second year these accolades have been awarded. Suppliers can enter their wines and these are judged by professionally trained Sommeliers who chose their 'Winelist' 2016 selection. Suppliers are asked to submit their wines in various categories, NOT by varietal or blend. The Sommeliers say they prefer to make listings this way rather than by cultivar as it makes wines easier to recommend to customers and pair with food. All wines are tasted blind and judged by taste alone. There were some surprises when the wines were revealed. We love it when these surprises appear. We so approve of blind tasting and no sight of labels which can lead to predictable expectations
The awards event took place on Monday at The Stack at Leinster Hall. It was a really wet day, so we all convened in their bar area where we had two 330 ml Brewhogs Red Lagers at a cost of R76
Then it was time to go upstairs for the awards. There were welcoming drinks of Graham Beck MCC
The two organisers, Ann Ferreira and Darielle Robertson.
Darielle tells us about the awards. Not all the categories entered were selected for the list. This changes every year. If you are interested in the categories, click here:
They were joined by Higgo Jacobs, one of the judges
And then some of the judges joined them. Not all could be present. The judges were Neil Grant, Pearl Oliver, Joakim Blackadder, Tinashe Nyamudoka, Greg Mutambe, Ewan Mackenzie, Spencer Fondaumiere
Higgo commented on how they had tasted and judged the wines that were entered and how they selected the wines for the list
Anticipation as winemakers wait to hear who'd won what
Rickety Bridge winemaker Wynand Grobler, looking elated
Peter Bubbles Ferreira of Graham Beck. They made the list with 5 MCC bubbles, along with Villiera with Monro Brut and Le Lude with their Rosé
The floor was then opened for comments from the judges. Here Ewan Mackenzie comments
Peter Ferreira had lots of interesting questions
Very good canapés were served. These were small potato and onion cakes
Moist beetroot rolls topped with cream cheese
Mushroom and rosemary stuffed choux buns. Everything was just bite sized, which we love. We hate struggling with something that needs three bites and goes down your front and all over your face
Tuna paté on toast
Smoked salmon rolls filled with gherkin cream and topped with salmon caviar
Attie Louw from Opstal in the Breedekloof picks up his stickers for his Carl Everson Chenin Blanc 2015. Always a great wine and we will be so pleased to see it on more good wine lists
Paul Kruger of Villiera and Peter Ferreira poured their bubblies
And then we got to taste most of the wines. Louis Strydom of Ernie Els Wines with Wynand Grobler of Rickety Bridge
Writers Anel Grobler and a friend
© John & Lynne Ford, Adamastor & Bacchus 2016
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The 2016 Sommeliers Selection wine list. The list is both comprehensive and quirky, classic and new, interesting and strange, expected and unexpected. There are surprises and lots of deserving wines. It should certainly ginger up a trade which can be boring and limited when wine lists are from one source only and cost a fortune...


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